dis+taste v.1.1 by Castol



Picture  (Click to enlarge)

Creator's description

3 oscillator synth using samples 

from the SidStation.







Notes from Castol:


-+- dis+taste v.1.1 -+-


dis+taste can be viewed as a partial emulation of an Elektron ESI Sidstation. It borrows some ideas, and uses waveforms sampled from a real Sidstation. All the same, I think it can cover a lot of ground, sounding even more dirty and raucous than the original, maybe touching that secret place all find within their hearts for the wonderful music and sounds created with the remarkable little "Sid" chip. 

At other times it can be a medium for expressing chaos, anger, frustration, distrust and hate. Balance...It is particularly large, created using a Luna II. Monophonic from the beginning. Using just a bit more than 2 DSPs. I am able to max out on a walloping two voices. Slightly useful maybe. Best to just use it monophonically. The presets included may not be the most musical but they should give an idea of the sounds capable with dis+taste. Admittedly I am drawn to distorting, gurgling, and pseudo random frequency modulation type sounds. 


The mp3 dis+taste_dem is using nothing but modular2 sounds with help from Digital Performer, an external sampler and a Lexicon Vortex. The bass line is a preset from dis+taste, so are the mew, mew, mew....mewwww type sounds. The rich paddy type sound is a preset from the patch SonicFM (I love that sling shot, pan modulation). The sequence type thing at the end is an audio loop of a generative patch I made a while back. It is being routed into dis+taste's audio in and being chopped up via audio pulses sent to the other audio in, to trigger the gate in time with the BPM of the sequence. Not as if there is much indication of a BPM.


Patch Description


Section1 - Oscillatorgroups..  

(Click to enlarge picture)

Each Oscillator group is a combined cluster of modules, meant to function in a symbiotic relationship with one another. 3 of these replicate groups exist, one for each oscillator.

Each group is identified by text modules placed at the beginning slot, for that group, in the 3rd column across.

The following list is an example of the module layout, followed by some concise, straightforward descriptions of their functions and uses.

            |                 | 
Osc On/Off    Osc Amp  Env        Group Designation 

Sample Osc     Lfo +- Offset      Filter Env

Pitch Mod      Lfo Phase Inv      Multi Filter

Multi Lfo     Ring Mod On/Off     Filter Selector

                Ring Mod Select

                Osc Gain 
            |                 |

Osc On/Off - Functions as a master switch, for enabling or disabling the particular Oscillator in that group. It is fed by an Osc VCA, output to a mixing matrix, which then feeds that groups Filter.

Sample Osc - Used in a straightforward manner. Pitch modulation is applied in line from the MVC sample freq output.

Pitch Mod - used for sample Osc pitch modulation. Input one is fed the corresponding groups LFO, input two is fed either aftertouch or velocity mod sources from the MVC.

Multi LFO - Used for frequency modulation of the Sample Oscillator in that group. 


External freq input is fed by a circuit used for syncing to midi clocks. The mod inputs are fed a top down collection of adjacent LFOs. This means LFO 1 is fed LFO's 2, 3. LFO 2 is fed LFO's 3, 1. LFO 3 is fed LFO's 1, 2. Aftertouch is fed into the key freq input from the MVC. It should be noted there are 2 supplementary circuits in the second column for each LFO.

Osc Amp Env - Straightforward volume control of the Oscillators. Time mod input fed from the key follow source on the MVC. Level mod fed velocity source from the MVC.

Lfo +/- offset - Force the LFO for that group into only positive or negative modulation. +64 is only positive, 0 is no effect (as it is normally), -64 is only negative.
This circuit is continental, assuming each Osc group is a continent and the patch as a whole is global. 

LFO Phase Inv - Inverts the LFO when a value of -64 is set. 0 effectively makes the LFO wave disappear, +64 sets the phase as is normally.

Ring Mod On/Off - Turn on or off, ring modulation for the corresponding oscillator in that group. 

Ring Mod Selector - Select the Oscillator to ring modulate the group Oscillator you're currently working on. All selectors are sent oscillators 1, 2, and 3. In that order. 4 is unused.

Osc Gain - A simple Gain module, pre-filter. 4 outputs are sourced from here. One goes into that group's Ring Modulator. 2 go into adjacent oscillators ring mod selectors and one goes into the Ring Mod On/Off selector. 

Group Desig - Text module with the number of the group it is placed into. Designate between groups more easily, The text modules can be very useful, but a better solution would be the ability to rename the modules themselves. The Nord Modular has this ability. It makes for a more intuitive  idea of what everything does or where it is receiving i/o.

Filter Env - An Envelope for modifying Filter Frequency. Used in a straightforward manner. Time mod is fed aftertouch out from the MVC. Level mod is fed velocity from the MVC.

Osc Filter - Subtract harmonics here. Key follow mod input fed by key follow from the MVC. Mod 1 input fed by that groups filter envelope. Mod 2 input fed a mixture of velocity and aftertouch between the groups, not all together. Again from the MVC.

Filter Selector - Select from Highpass, Bandpass or Lowpass outputs. In that order.  For that group's filter.

-+- -+- -+-

Multi-segment Envelopes were chosen for their great flexibility. In this case I intentioned to use them mostly as DADSR type envelopes. Now that I have spent more time with them, I find I prefer to set them all up as DDADD (looping 4 point) SSR envelopes....ha! They can effectively function as user drawn waveform LFOs, with all the delay, fade in/out, staggered, stopping behaviour you can imagine. Multi loop points would be interesting, with ability to modulate between them an forceable exit from these loop.




Section2 - thatlargespacefilledwithmodulesnotmeantfortweaking section..    

(Click to enlarge picture)


Underneath it all, doing a lot of hard work are these modules.

A vast assortment of VCAs, Mixers, Ring Mods, and Constant Value modules are the majority here. Most modules with tweakable parameters are not meant to be tweaked.

I have employed a lot of things I have learned in the past few months studying modular synthesis with the Creamware modular synthesizer.

I am more than happy to share my findings. But frankly it would take much more time than I would care to explain these things, in enough detail to make it worthwhile.

There are many places online with info relating to modular synthesis on any platform, hardware or software. The concepts are almost always the same. The trick comes in interpreting the subtle differences. Most things which aren't in dedicated module form for our modular can be replicated with 2 or more different modules. 
I will however go over the straight forward things down about here.

This starts in the 3rd column.

There is yer Midi Clock for syncing the LFOs. Feeding a Frequency Divisor, from its frequency output

A VU Meter, for the inevitable necessity of checking signals when things aren't working as they ought to.

The ignominious Sid noise. In a sample oscillator, playing back at a fixed frequency. In actuality the noise on the Sidstation pitches up and down when tracking midi notes. It is also much more varied than a static sample, as this is. But, all the same it adds a lot of character and realism. The output from this circuit is mixed late into the signal chain, before being modulated in level by the final Envelope and VCA. One can turn down this noise, or off, depending on your tastes. It has no envelope of its own and is intentioned to play at a fixed level until the final envelope closes down. This mod level is sourced from a simple Constant Value module feeding a VCA mod input which is being fed the Audio Out of the Sample Oscillator. This saves on DSP, not having an envelope here.
The fourth column contains the Frequency Divisor for midi syncing of the LFOs. Underneath this is the Constant Value module which controls the VCA of the Sid noise.

-+- -+- -+-


 Section 3 - theeverythingelsethereis section..

(Click to enlarge picture)

 This section occupies the 4th column in the patch field.
Contained in here are an effects section, pseudo noise gating (external or manual ctrl), audio input serially through the 3 Filters and finally through the effects section. A few Mixers, a final Amp Envelope, and the sample pool containing the raw SID waveforms. 

A layout of the modules and more concise descriptions up
ahead. As if you aren't already excited!









The Modules

Freq Rate Redux Mixer 
Bit Quanitizer
Pre Distortion Eq
Distortion Type Selector
Post Filter Eq
Post Distortion Gain
Distortion Mixer
Sample Pool
Sid_Amb_Noi Mixer
Oscillator Group Mixer
Final Amp Envelope
Audio Input On/Off
Audio Gate Mod Smoother
Noise Gate Behavior Selector
Noise Gate Manual Gate Control


Freq Rate Redux Mixer - Intended for mixing in only a partial amount of freq rate reduction into the 
signal chain. Input one is sourced from the bit quantizer, input two is sourced from the decimator.

Bit Quantizer - Bit quantisation of the audio signal.
This is the first module and input of uneffected audio into the effect chain.
I like to say, "this is where the magic" happens". lol!

Decimator - Decimate the signal, further. It may seem redundant to have this and a bit quantizer
practically inline with each other, but frequency rate reduction is available no other way. The frequency can be modulated by aftertouch coming from the MVC. 

---> A Note Regarding Bit Rate Reduction:
Turning down the bit rate has the effect of introducing increasing crosstalk between ALL oscillators which may be turned off, or down, and ones which are on or turned up.

Pre Distortion EQ - Pre filter distortion. Very flexible, yes, a little bit labor intensive to experiment
with in practice.  

Distortion Selector - Select from soft, of hard...hmmm...distortion. In that order. 

Distortion - Distortion, plain and simply. Pre and post EQ provide a little more tweakability than is usual.

Post Distortion EQ - EQ after distortion. Same as pre EQ, flexible yes, labor intensive, labor intensive, yes. If one could "drag" in filter frequencies it would be a lot more friendly. 

Distortion Gain - Just a little bit more please.

Distortion Mixer - Mix in just a little bit of distortion, or a lot.
The first input is fed from the freq rate redux mixer, the second is the expected output of the 
distortion gain module. 
Sample Pool - Contains the 5 base Sid waveforms and a sample of the ambient noise present in the Sidstation.
It should be noted, that when dragging these samples from the pool to the sample oscillators, the names get all scrambled in the sample oscillators. This makes it hard to know what waveform is loaded in each oscillator. Feel free to write down the gibberish of numbers that is displayed for 
each wave. and let me know! I haven't bothered yet.
Sid_Amb_Noi Mixer - Mixer which on input one is fed by the sid_amb_noi  intentioned sample oscillator on the bottom of the patch.
Input two is sourced from the mixer underneath it. 
The output from this two channel mixer is then fed to the final volume VCA.

Osc Group Mixer - A mixer of the 3 oscillator groups. Input one is fed by group one, two by two...etc. Input 4 is fed by a specially derived serial mix through the 3 filters and effects section. Intended for audio input. It is only active when audio input is turned on. 

Final Amp Env - The final amp envelope. Controls everything in the end, even the envelopeless sid_amb_noi sample oscillator. 

Aud Input On/Off - Utilizing a crafty collection of VCAs, mixers, and constant value modules. An external signal input from the 2nd audio input can be fed serially through the 3 filters and effects section. Cut in and out of the chain via a simple on/off switch. If it was not cut out of the chain oscillators 1 and 2 would bleed through 2 and 3. And indeed when Audio In is turned on via this switch you will note that the volume of the oscillators increases. Audio input can be used while synthesizing sound. But if you wish to not hear the oscillators when passing audio into the patch turn the oscillators off at the switch located in each oscillator group, above the sample oscillators. 

Audio Gate Mod Smoother - This envelope follower is used to track audio input, and smooth the resulting modulation derived. Triggering on ramped up and off, ramped down. This module also influences the manual gating control in the same manner. Real audio gates are used mainly to "gate" their own signal when a certain threshold is reached. This could be implemented, but
it has not. One should be able to route the output out the patch  externally, back into this input, but it hasn't worked for me, even using a xmod module inline with the input in the patch. Anyway, the
Final Amp Envelope can function well enough in a similar manner, though maybe not as dynamic to the source audio.

Aud Gate Behave Selector - Select whether the Audio Gate responds to manual triggering or audio input. In this order 

Man Aud Gate Ctrl - Manual triggering of the Audio Gate, On or Off.
-+- -+- -+-

So this is it. THE final version. Greatly expanded upon the original. Still a promise to release additional preset lists in the future on the appropriate PlanetZ forum. I post under the name castol. 


One can reach me at should you have any direct, comments, questions or suggestions. 

I am always willing and able to delve into modular synthesis at a moments notice 

-+- pshhhh -+- "dons modular synthesizing cap".  Heh. 

Or anything really, ask me about my hard drive named elpha, or maybe about my nickname castol. Or the music I create, and where one can find it. Nowhere at the moment, been working towards the other end of that equation since the beginning. I synthesize, program, effect and record lots of sound. I generally have lots of ideas, but my composition method doesn't lend itself well to getting
whole tracks completed. Or where I exclusively buy my granola and sliced bread from. Or my
position on Veganism. Or just say hello.

Special thanks go out to Ben Walker for his positive and helpful demeanor.

Until then....





dis+taste_dem.mp3 596 kb.

See notes at the top of this page for a description of this mp3.


noisy distaste.mp3  145kb

Notes on noisy_distaste.mp3: this audio file contains 4 examples of 2 presets included, and the built-in noise that this patch utilizes (but which can be turned down, or up, accordingly). 

The first 3 examples use the preset femus. The 4th example uses the preset oh_nuh_jo. 


{1} intentional noise with none of the other 3 oscillators mixed in, at the level it is in the preset femus. 

{2} femus as it should sound. 

{3} femus with the intended noise turned down. 

{4} a simple little sequence using the preset oh_nuh_jo. 


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